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In the papers today - 1 August

Britain and California are to sign a new carbon trading agreement, side-stepping opposition from President George Bush. The announcement that could eventually bring California into the European carbon market was announced yesterday by Tony Blair and Arnold Schwarzenegger, California's Governor.
Carbon emission trading, established by the Kyoto protocol in 1997, has been rejected by Bush but global warming has emerged as a significant issue in California where the former actor has made the environment a key theme The IndependentLondon-listed Ocean Power Technologies is to build what it claims will be Europe's first commercial wave plant off the coat of Spain with the help of Total, the French oil group. The facility will produce a mere 1.25 MW of electricity but will move wave power from the experimental to the operational starting next year. OPT, one of the pioneers in the wave energy sector, has recently won planning approval for a 5MW wave power facility off Cornwall and has 50MW plant planned for the coast of Oregon in the US. Shares in the company rose 7% to 80p on London's Aim market The GuardianThe Burial site for Britain's stockpile of nuclear waste should be decided by a country-wide contest in which regions bid to become home to the hole, a government advisory panel said yesterday.In return for housing the underground repository, which remain radioactive for centuries, the winning region would receive compensation in the form of improved roads, schools and other facilities. Better emergency services and expertise to monitor the long term environment and health of the population would also be on offer The GuardianThe Government has abandoned its pledge to reduce congestion and has instead forecast large increases in traffic queues.In 2000, Lord McDonald, the transport minister, promised to cut congestion by eight per cent over the decade. Now, the government has issued new targets under which it is assumed that journey times will increase by about 14 per cent in Bristol and 11 per cent in Yorkshire by 2010 The TelegraphElectrical giant Curry's is aiming to cash in on the 'green agenda' by selling solar panels. It says it will cost about £9,000 to buy and install the panels in the average 3 bedroom household - but Whitehall grants could bring down the coat by half. A spokesman said it would take an average household between seven and 18 years to recoup the cost of the panels, both through savings in electricity bills and by selling surplus summer energy to local power companies The TelegraphThames Water, the beleaguered water company that is being sold off by its German parent company RWE, yesterday appointed Simon Batey as its new finance director. Mr Batey is the former group finance director or rival water supplier United Utilities. By coincidence, Mr Batey's job at United Utilities was filled a month ago by the former finance director of Thames Water, Tim Weller The IndependentRelated links:Today's top stories

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